African Journal of Range and Forage Science

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Influence of temperature and growth stage on the diurnal fluctuation in the non-structural carbohydrate content of kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst).

Marais J.P., Figenschou D.L.


The non-structural carbohydrates of kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst) seem to consist mainly of sucrose. Total non-structural carbohydrate content increased rapidly during the morning and reached maximum concentration in the afternoon. After sunset, the concentration decreased rapidly, reaching a minimum level by midnight. Low temperatures resulted in a significantly higher non-structural carbohydrate content in all plant fractions than at warmer growth temperatures. Non-structural carbohydrate concentrations were higher in stem tissue than in leaf material and the values were higher in 3-week than in 6-week regrowth.

Keywords: carbohydrate; carbohydrates; cedara research station; fructose; glucose; growth; growth stage; kikuyu; leaves; nitrogen; pennisetum clandestinum; regrowth; south africa; sucrose

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